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Overlord strategy planning question

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#1 Indalecio



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Posted 18 February 2014 - 06:44 AM

Hi there

We're about to have our first taste of the game with me taking the role of the overlord. I've spent a lot of time gathering information about my options as an overlord for when the campaign kicks in. My question however is if you think that I should be preparing anything for this First Blood quest, bearing in mind I don't know which heroes they will be picking. I guess plot cards can only be used during a campaign and not during this trial quest.


It's a trial quest so I don't mind if the heroes end up kicking my butt, however my real issue is that we're going to start off the campaign straight after that, leaving me with no time for planning anything after they've picked their heroes before going to the first quest. Do you think this is an issue? I mean, I can always rectify my approach between sessions, but I've read so many "heroes just kick my butt" posts that I don't want to run into the same issues just because I couldn't handle the OL planning during the 1-2 first quests.


Any opinions are welcome. Thanks.

Edited by Indalecio, 18 February 2014 - 06:45 AM.

#2 Zaltyre



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Posted 18 February 2014 - 07:35 AM

The only thing you've got to decide now, I believe is whether you want to go with Basic or Basic 2. The class(es) you pick beyond that will depend on your heroes and their playstyle. I went with Basic 2 for a recent Shadow Rune campaign, and while I miss a a few cards from Basic, I'm glad I picked what I did.

Edited by Zaltyre, 18 February 2014 - 07:35 AM.

#3 griton



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Posted 18 February 2014 - 10:30 AM

I can't quite tell from your post, but I want to make sure it's clear: First Blood isn't just a "trial quest"; it is the first quest of the campaign. It's often used as a demo quest, but when playing the campaign, you still play First Blood to kick off the campaign. Whoever wins that quest gets to determine what the NEXT quest in the campaign is (the other rewards are all the same).


As for strategy as the Overlord: Move your ettins into position to block the exit hallway (positioned on the left edge of the crossroads), and just run like mad with your goblins and remember that they can move through heroes (don't even bother trying to attack the heroes with them) Use your ettin's throw ability to knock back any heroes that are getting in the way. If the heroes start out too cautious, you may even be able to block them in the entrance.


Difficulty is largely going to depend on how many heroes you have. 2 or 3 heroes makes this a much more difficult quest because you don't start with enough goblins on the map to complete the encounter. So you have to get one out through the exit before you can reinforce another one. If you have 4 heroes, first move the minion ettin in the way while using Mauler to protect the search token in the back room. 


Be aware of the ideal hero plan: Rush the goblins and take out at least one or two the first round. Rush the treasure to stock up on gold, while keeping someone around to take out the freshly reinforced goblins. Then finish off Mauler.

#4 zooeyglass



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Posted 19 February 2014 - 05:40 PM

I can only share my own experience rather than tried & tested wisdom: often the overlord has a hard time at the start of a campaign - heroes are skilling up, many lvl 1 overlord cards don't help *as much* - but building towards the future, so specialising down one subdeck, playing to the monsters that complement your playstyle, means in the late game the overlord is really very dangerous: the heroes' skills are all known, the overlord's deck is growing & morphing & dangerous.... That's been my experience anyway.

#5 Whitewing



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Posted 19 February 2014 - 09:29 PM

I've generally found that the overlord has an easiest time near the start of act 1 and the start of act 2, and the hardest time near the end of each act. Reason being that the players get more equipment and their stats start getting better than the monsters they are fighting, whereas near the start of each act monsters are at their strongest.

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#6 Tasressurect



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Posted 19 February 2014 - 11:12 PM

As mentioned above, the only true reward for winning 'First Blood' is the option to choose the next quest.


Now this is obviously a powerful advantage, as choosing the next quest can set you up for success.


Some quests are strongly favoured to the OL, some are strongly favoured to SOME heroes, some are strongly unfavoured to SOME heroes.


Example: A "race" encounter where Heroes have great movement or poor movement.

 - Can be further intensified by using movement-impairing open groups.


These are some small advantages and disadvantages, although the game CAN and usually come down to the rolls of the dice.

#7 Indalecio



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Posted 20 February 2014 - 01:49 AM

Thanks for all the replies so far. I kind of misunderstood the purpose of this introduction quest and I see now how this quest interacts with the rest of the campaign. I was looking in the quest book but the information was in the campaigns section of the rules book.


At the end of the day there is almost too much information on the internet about different configurations for the OL upon starting off a campaign, and I can't find a list of things I should absolutely be avoiding, so I guess there is no right or wrong in essence, only useful abilities on situational basis. It's all about fine tuning and then everything comes own to your dice rolls. So I'll just make the necessary preparations and chill out. I think I'll just pick the Basic I deck and have a look at my potential first OL purchases just to have it prepared/planned before moving on to the next quest. Probably picking a plot deck as well although I still haven't decided if I want an agent already present as a lieutenant in the Shadow Rune campaign or somebody from the other expansions. Thematically it should be one of the campaign lieutenants, on the other hand it could potentially become an issue for the quest using him/her.

Edited by Indalecio, 20 February 2014 - 01:51 AM.

#8 Whitewing



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Posted 20 February 2014 - 03:18 PM

Dice rolls are always going to matter, but I've found that if you strategize correctly, you can hedge your bets enough in the right direction that dice rolls become far less important overall. People I play with have a tendency to employ gamble strategies (use your abilities and charge right into them, then blow them up with explosive runes, maybe you can kill 4 of them with one attack!) that can backfire really hard if the dice don't work out well for them, but I tend to play more conservatively and make sure that even if the dice don't work out well, I have some backups.


Because the game features dice as a mechanic, your decision making as overlord should be about maximizing your odds. Knowing the probabilities of accomplishing certain things helps a lot.


For example, the odds of an act 1 ettin rolling maximum damage on an attack without playing an overlord card is 1/9 (4 possible combinations which result in 5 hearts and a surge for +3). If your target has 8 health left and a grey defense die, your odds of killing them with one hit (assuming there are no other relevant abilities) is a 1/54 chance, not great odds. Therefore, you should absolutely not employ a strategy that relies on getting that one target down in one ettin attack.


Being able to calculate probabilities of things helps a LOT in this game.

Edited by Whitewing, 20 February 2014 - 06:28 PM.

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